Charlyne Cares is a daily reminder that God cares and that we care about your marriage. Each morning Charlyne sends a devotional and Bob does a Prodigal Perspective on Tuesdays. These come from someone who has experienced the tragedy of divorce and the triumph of a family restored by God speaking to Charlyne's heart not to give up on their marriage after she divorced Bob.
Then the high priest stood up before them and asked Jesus, “Are you not going to answer? What is this testimony that these men are bringing against you?” But Jesus remained silent and gave no answer. Again the high priest asked him, “Are you the Christ, the Son of the Blessed One?” “I am,” said Jesus. “And you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Mighty One and coming on the clouds of heaven.” Mark 14:60-62
Jesus is now alone and arrested. Let me share the sequence of time from when Jesus was arrested. There was a religious trial before Annas and before Caiaphas, Peter denying Jesus, the condemnation by the Sanhedrin, the death of Judas, the civil trial before Pilate, the trial before Herod, who then sent him back to Pilate, the mockery, then Jesus was beaten, He was led away to be crucified, then He went in the procession to Golgotha and the crucifixion.
Finally Pilate handed him over to them to be crucified. So the soldiers took charge of Jesus. Carrying his own cross, he went out to the place of the Skull (which in Aramaic is called Golgotha). Here they crucified him, and with him two others—one on each side and Jesus in the middle. Pilate had a notice prepared and fastened to the cross. It read: JESUS OF NAZARETH, THE KING OF THE JEWS. Many of the Jews read this sign, for the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city, and the sign was written in Aramaic, Latin and Greek. The chief priests of the Jews protested to Pilate, “Do not write ‘The King of the Jews,’ but that this man claimed to be king of the Jews.” Pilate answered, “What I have written, I have written.” John 19:16-22
There are many lessons that you and I should learn about the Lord's death on the cross, but I believe the last seven words that He said on the cross are very profound. I am sure you have heard many teachings on this topic and there are special musicals written regarding the Lord's profound statements.
The First Word – "Forgiveness": Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” Luke 23:34
The Second Word – "Salvation": One of the criminals who hung there hurled insults at him: “Aren't you the Christ? Save yourself and us!” But the other criminal rebuked him. “Don't you fear God,” he said, “since you are under the same sentence? We are punished justly, for we are getting what our deeds deserve. But this man has done nothing wrong.” Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.” Jesus answered him, “I tell you the truth, today you will be with me in paradise.” Luke 23:39-43
The Third Word – "Love": Near the cross of Jesus stood his mother, his mother's sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to his mother, “Dear woman, here is your son,” and to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” From that time on, this disciple took her into his home. John 19:25-27
The Fourth Word – "Spiritual Suffering": And at the ninth hour Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?”-- which means, ‘My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?’” Mark 15:34
The Fifth Word – "Physical Suffering": Later, knowing that all was now completed, and so that the Scripture would be fulfilled, Jesus said, “I am thirsty.” John 19:28
The Sixth Word – "Triumph": When he had received the drink, Jesus said, “It is finished.” With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit. John 19:30
The Seventh Word – "Committal": It was now about the sixth hour, and darkness came over the whole land until the ninth hour, for the sun stopped shining. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two. Jesus called out with a loud voice, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.” When he had said this, he breathed his last. Luke 23:44-46
Jesus Christ had paid the price! God sent His only Son to be the ultimate sacrifice, shedding His Blood on the cross, dying for our sins. Jesus Christ gave the most precious gift to each of us - eternal life. The battles of His life on earth were over. The victory was about to happen. God was going to reveal His mighty power to everyone. Remember Jesus praying to His Heavenly Father on Thursday evening:
After Jesus said this, he looked toward heaven and prayed: “Father, the time has come. Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you. For you granted him authority over all people that he might give eternal life to all those you have given him. Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.” John 17:1-3
“It is finished, the battle is over, the victory has been won,” are words from a well-known song written by Bill Gaither, It Is Finished. The disciples on that Friday thought their relationship with Jesus Christ was over. But, the disciples' ministry was just about to begin in an even more powerful way. God was going to show His power over death. God was going to reveal that Jesus Christ had defeated death and Satan. May you believe that for your own marriage forever.
I never thought I could wait and believe the Lord for a miracle in my marriage. (Yes, I had those thoughts, also.) I would listen to my family and friends with unbelief and then start doubting all the scriptures and signs that the Lord had given to me personally. Early one morning, I was crying out to my Lord. The pain, the discouragement, all the responsibilities of a single parent, failing as a wife, tight finances and so many other things were coming against me. Then suddenly I felt the presence of the Lord, not with an audible voice, but a thought that was so strong saying "It is finished."
I then started asking the Lord many questions. He wanted me to stop doubting and believe in Him. I knew I had to make a decision that night. I chose to believe in my Lord, in His power and in His Word. I had the popular Gaither song, It Is Finished at home. I played that song on our record player for hours, receiving the message that Bob was a prisoner. Bob did not know that the battle had been won. I needed to pray and wait for the Lord to set Bob free. My husband was coming home to the Lord and to his family someday. I chose that night to wait forever!
Are you willing to wait for God's best for you and your family? Today are you walking in victory? Do you believe that your Lord has paid the price for you and your family to be saved? Has the enemy stolen your spouse, your faith and your joy? Jesus defeated the enemy on Resurrection Sunday! You and I can walk in victory each and every day of our lives!
The darkness and hopelessness of marriage problems may be overwhelming and frightening. May you never forget the King of Kings you serve! Learn to share the blessings that your Lord Jesus is doing in your life! Friday and Saturday were the darkest days for the disciples. You may be facing your darkest days with difficult circumstances, but remember that Sunday is almost here!
This Resurrection Sunday celebrate that Jesus Christ is Alive! He defeated the enemy! Praise His Holy Name! Nothing is too hard for our Lord to do, including resurrecting dead marriages!
“I am the true grapevine, and my Father is the gardener. Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing."
John 15:1, 5
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"Praise the Lord, after giving my testimony of standing for a restored marriage two marriages that had separated are now working things out and praying for full restoration. God is faithful." (Tennessee)
"During Holy Week my prodigal who divorced me last year began moving things home. On Easter we spent time with both extended families after no contact with them in years. Hallelujah, Jesus is risen and He is resurrecting our marriage." (Ohio)